So members of the Vermont Legislature want to know how Vermonters feel about Gay Marriage.
The leaders of the state House and Senate said yesterday they have appointed a commission to ask Vermonters if the Legislature should allow same-sex couples to marry.
The 10-member commission will be led by Tom Little, a former state representative who served as chairman of the House Judiciary Committee in 2000, the year the Legislature passed a law that granted same-sex couples the rights and responsibilities of marriage through civil unions.
This is a little misleading. While it is true that the Vermont Legislature "granted same-sex couples the rights and responsibilities of marriage through civil unions" they only did it because the Vermont Supreme Court ordered them to do so.
The volunteer commission will hold public hearings and is scheduled to complete its study by the end of April and report to the Legislature.
"I think many people saw civil unions as a first step," House Speaker Gaye Symington said after a Burlington press conference with the Senate president pro tem, Peter Shumlin. "I think for many Vermonters the question has been when, not so much as whether, we would eventually recognize same-sex union through marriage."
Well, if they want to know how I feel about it, I'll tell them.
If Gays want to be able to marry each other, I say fine.
I could care less.
I do not believe that their ability to marry will bring about the collapse of Western Civilization; though it might just might be one more reason for Islamist terrorists to hate us. But who cares? We already have Paris Hilton and I doubt she is going away anytime soon.
But here are my requirements before that happens:
Do not, and I mean DO NOT, try to settle this in the court again. If you can't get it through the Legislature, then try again. And if you never get it through the Legislature, leave it the hell alone.
Mandating Gay Marriage through the court can very well precede the death of Western Civilization. And before you get all legal on me, I will repeat what I have written before
- Simply stating that marriage is a basic human right doesn't make it so. There is no right to marry either in the US Constitution or in the Vermont Constitution which is why Judge's typically use the "equal protection" argument.
- The equal protection argument is bogus because no individual is being discriminated against; no males may marry another male regardless of their sexual orientation. So everyone is being treated equally on an individual basis. Simply because a heterosexual male would not likely want to marry another male is immaterial. The same is obviously true of females.
- And the statement from Judge Kramer that the laws discriminate against the "basic human right to marry a person of one's choice" is a dangerous precedent. Does this mean that in the future a 50 year old male should be allowed to marry a 13 year old girl? How about a 13 year old boy? Should a brother be able to marry his sister? Should a father be able to marry his daughter?
So you want a Gay Marriage law? Fine. Here is what you should do to get my support.
When you run for the Legislature next, make it clear how you would vote on a same-sex marriage bill
When you craft the bill, make sure that you craft it finely enough to precisely define who this law covers and who it does not. You do not want in inadvertently allow 50 year-old men able to marry 12 year-old boys. And if you "adverently" put this in the bill, and you did not make clear before I voted for you that this is what you were going to do, I will be really, really upset.
If Vermont wants Gay Marriages, that's what they should get.
But if it doesn't want it, then just leave it on the table until they do.